Cowboys Make Moves for 75 Man Deadline

Watch out for several moves today around the league as the 75-man roster deadline looms.

The Cowboys have already made their transactions.

Rob Phillips reports,

The Cowboys trimmed their preseason roster to an NFL-mandated 75 players on Tuesday by releasing rookie WR Julian Hawkins, placing rookie LB Brandon Williams (torn ACL) on injured reserve and placing rookie OL Robert Brewster (torn pectoral muscle) on the physically unable to perform list.

Nothing really unexpected or controversial there.


September 1 — Roster cutdown to maximum of 75 players.

September 5 — Roster cutdown to maximum of 53 players.

Three Down, One To Go

With preseason coming to an end this weekend, I found myself asking what have we learned from these exhibition games? After all isn’t that what preseason is all about? Of course, Cowboys fans what a win every game no matter what, but when it comes to preseason its more about seeing how the backups handle their roles, and learning who should stay and who should go.

Most would agree, the starters have looked amazing. Training camp served its purpose and served it well this year. Tony Romo looks rock solid. The power of Marion Barber and Felix Jones looks unstoppable. The defense looks tough (with a few minor adjustments).

Kevin OgletreePROS

Kevin Ogletree– who knew this undrafted rookie would prove to have so much talent. I agree with the fact it is only preseason but I certainly see Ogletree making the team before Stanback.

David Buehler – many questioned drafting a kicker, more questioned him making the team, but this special teams ‘specialist’ not only has an accurate kickoff but can tackle as well.

Keith Brooking – his experience and leadership reminds me of Zach Thomas last season. Its always nice to have a veteran role model on the squad.


Corey Procter – his performance has been underwhelming and rumors persist that he will be cut.

Courtney Brown – after getting an earful from Coach Phillips in front of the cameras, Brown’s most recent pass interference penalty was possibly the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Isaiah Stanback – he has been given a few too many chances to prove he can be a reliable receiver. Keeping him on the roster any longer is just absurd, when he’s actually healthy enough to play he hasn’t shown he has what it takes to make the team.

Bobby Carpenter – another first round draft pick letdown. He most likely won’t be cut because of injuries to rookies and the lack of depth at LB. However, that doesn’t mean I have to like him.

Penalties– they have got to get better disciplined. After 3 match-ups the Cowboys have racked up 32 penalties for 300 yards.

Special Teams– too many of the penalties just listed came from special teams. Field position means too much to continuously give up yardage for holding and other pathetic penalties.


Jon Kitna– hopefully it won’t matter how Kitna played in preseason because we won’t see him take the field. Some are saying he’s not the guy, but he is only a backup after all. His age is definitely catching up with him, but in time of need he may still be able to get the job done.

Wade Phillips

I’m sure there are a few I missed. Who would you add to pros or cons? Is there anyone you are still undecided about? The Cowboys have to cut three players for tomorrow’s deadline, who will it be?

Roy Williams Listed As Day-To-Day

Several sources are reporting that Roy Williams is listed as day-to-day and should return soon. The reports say Williams has a contusion (bruise) on his left shoulder.

Dallas News has this quote from Jerry Jones during his radio appearance this morning:

“I’m not implying that we have a long-winded thing here,” said Jerry, who stated that the Cowboys will not consider signing a veteran receiver. “Based on our review here, we’re talking about a very short timespan. I don’t know that he’ll go Saturday … but he’ll be out there real quick.”

Star-Telegram reports,

The Cowboys confirmed Roy Williams’ negative x-ray in an email this morning. There was no fracture to his shoulder. They will continue to evaluate him on a day to day basis with a shoulder contusion, which is a fancy word for a bruise.

However it is still unlikely that Williams will play against the 49ers on Saturday for precautionary reasons. If he does sit then look for him miss the preseason final against the Vikings on Thursday and return for the regular season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Hopefully we lucked out and Roy will return for the season opener and be fine. Isn’t this just our luck?

Commish Addresses Rules Regarding Video Board

The new rules regarding the video board have been issued and posted on

They are as follows:

  • If a ball in play strikes a video board, guide wire, sky cam or any other object, the ball will be dead immediately, and the down will be replayed at the previous spot.
  • If there is not an on-field ruling that the ball struck an object, the Replay Assistant is empowered to initiate a booth review, including if the event occurs prior to the two-minute warning. If, prior to the two-minute warning, no booth review is initiated by the Replay Assistant, a coach’s challenge is permitted under the customary procedures for such a challenge.
  • In the event the down is replayed:(a) The game clock will be reset to the time remaining when the snap occurred.
    (b) All penalties will be disregarded, except for personal fouls, which will be administered prior to replaying the down.
  • Rule 3, Section 1 of the Official NFL Playing Rules provides for an official ruling to be implemented “in the interim between the annual rules meeting” that is “official only during the current season.” This Official Ruling expires at the conclusion of the 2009 postseason.

Commissioner Roger Goodell added,

“We will continue to address the particular circumstances in Dallas, giving full consideration to the competitive, safety and fan experience issues involved. The Cowboys have been fully cooperative as we have addressed this subject, and we will continue to work closely with the club on a longer term resolution.”

So basically, the board will not be raised and punts that hit the board will be replayed. However, if it becomes a continuous problem they will address the matter further.

Only In Dallas Does A Video Board Get So Much Attention

Almost every Cowboys fan knew when it happened that it would become the hot topic of the week. As soon as the ball thumped the very bottom of the video board I told my friend, “oh no, here we go! The media is going to go crazy over this.” That’s fine. It’s better than previous topics, I suppose.

The team is now working with the league trying to establish the height of the video board and I’m sure they will get it all worked out before the season officially begins.

Here’s an interesting take on the topic though, the Cowboys’ very own Pro Bowl punter Mat McBriar had this to say:

“Our game plan is to kick to the sidelines. So for myself it’s not in my mind. I know it’s there, obviously. But it’s not something that catches my eye as much as guys who are kicking straight down the field.”

McBriar said there is no reason to make any changes or raise the video boards because one punt in one game hit them.

McBriar, a 2006 Pro Bowler, said he could boot punts into the video boards “probably 50 percent of the time” if that was what he was trying to do.

I don’t know guys, I think if anyone would know it would be Mat.

Some reporters and analysts are blaming Jerry Jones’ pride on not raising the boards (that includes my boss who called me Monday morning about the issue). I didn’t think that was the case until I read on the team’s official site that they plan to disconnect and raise the board temporarily for the U2 concert in September.

While Jerry Jones’ and Stephen Jones’ are declining to comment on the situation, I’m sure if the league orders them to raise the video boards they will do it without question. But why should they do it voluntarily? What if that rookie was aiming to hit the board intentionally?

Does it even matter, since the league’s regulation is 85 feet and the board actually hangs 90 feet above the field?

Of course opposing teams are going to complain and disagree. So you make it a rule to redo the kick in the rare occasions that the punt hits the board. It may put a damper on the situation if there’s a nice punt return but a rule is a rule.

I just have one more thing to say….


Cowboy Tidbits

Fullback Deon Anderson could find himself jobless. Currently he is on the injured list after having arthroscopic knee surgery but is expected to be back in uniform by opening day. However his backup Julius Crosslin has been doing a good job filling in for Anderson. The Cowboys are not expected to keep more than one fullback on the roster because they plan on using more two tight end formations. If Crosslin continues to impress, Anderson could be the one looking for a new team, after it was expected Crosslin was the one to be cut.

Sporting News Today is reporting that Crosslin has been solid at the point of attack, playing with good pad level and leverage that opens running lanes. The coaches are also impressed by his hands and say he is doing a good job catching the ball. This was evident on a converted third and 1 play in Friday’s preseason game against Tennessee. Still a bit early to tell how this position battle will end but Crosslin has made the most of his opportunity with Anderson on the sidelines.

We all know and love Jason Witten, one of Tony Romo’s favorite targets. Sporting News is giving fans the opportunity to ask him a question with a chance to have it and Jason’s answer published in an upcoming issue of the magazine. For those interested send your question along with your hometown to

Cowboys Stadium-Punting Flaw?

The Titans think they have revealed a flaw in the new Cowboys Stadium and it looks like maybe they have.

Punting is a normal part of a football game and always will be. In the new $1.2 billion Cowboys Stadium the video board that was installed is sitting at 100 feet above the field and cost $40 million, it extends from 20 yard to 20 yard line. It is a great thing for the fans in the stadium because it allows you to see the action no matter where you are in the stadium, however it may very well be in the way of some punts.


Punters are going have to find a way not to punt the ball to high, because if they do the ball could hit as it did in the Cowboys’ second pre-season game against the Titans. Titans’ punter A.J. Trapasso actually hit the bottom of the video board and due to the dead ball ruling was allowed to re-punt.

Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones believes that this not an issue and that the rule is clear – if it hits it, just re-punt.

Yes, when the stadium was built this possiblity should have been thought of and maybe it was and could have been deemed as not an issue, since both teams have to deal with it. Yet it is still a weird thing because it may cause punters to punt the ball a little differently in the Cowboys’ stadium. I guess maybe they should do what the arena league did with the nets at the end of the field and just play the ball off of the video board… hee hee.

Protect That Ball!

One thing the Cowboys and Tony Romo are concentrating on in training camp this season is cutting down on his turnovers, especially his fumbles. Romo’s case of Slippery Pigskin syndrome last year made any fan cringe at the sight of him carelessly running around the pocket with the ball unprotected in one hand trying to make a play. Don’t get me wrong we love the heart and effort, but he has to recognize when to eat the ball or throw it away.

So now if he can take what he is working on in camp into games he should be able to cut down on the 21 total turnovers he had last season, 14 being interceptions, 7 LOST fumbles and another 6 that were recovered by Cowboys.

It really hurt Dallas last year in the last game of the season against the Eagles with the winner heading to the playoffs. Romo fumbled twice in that very important painful game, and one of them was returned for a 73 yard touchdown.

Of course he did have a broken Pinkie finger part of last season that may have attributed to some of the fumbles but prior to that he had already lost 3 in the six games before his injury. The seven lost fumbles last season was more than he had as a starter in his first season and a half so I am willing to put most of the blame on that little broken digit.

The Associated Press reported on Sporting News that “early in off season workouts, Romo started talking about cutting down on risky throws and being quicker to take a sack or throw the ball away. He also said he was serious about getting a better grip on the ball while scrambling”.

This became evident on one play in practice when “surrounded in the pocket on one play, he pulled the ball in tight until just before throwing a completion. Romo did the same thing while rolling out to his right near the goal line a few snaps later, instead of holding the ball away from his body with one hand while running like he so often has done in the past”.

Head coach Wade Phillips is pleased on how his quarterback is progressing with this, as well as how he is maturing as a player.

“He’s a natural. He sees so many things and he has such a quick release, and he’s so accurate,” Phillips said. “He just makes fantastic plays. We see it every day on tape. … He makes a throw that you say, `Wow, what a play.’ That’s what the great ones do.”

Its a long season, but lets see how he does this Friday night against Tennessee in the Cowboys new stadium. We should see him play a few more series than he did in the Raider game, which will help him get ready for the games that count.

Williams and Newman Return to Practice

Terence NewmanRoy Williams and Terence Newman both returned to practice today. That’s definitely good news for the team.

Williams only missed one day of practice (Sunday) after coming down hard on his wrist. X-rays came back negative. He practiced Monday with a brace on his sprained wrist. Word has it he was the first one to catch a pass from Tony Romo at practice.

Newman finally returned after missing just over a week. The veteran cornerback was sidelined August 8th after straining his groin. After hearing the news, thousands of Cowboys fans sighed all over the nation, “Oh no, not again!”

In all seriousness, the Cowboys really don’t need another injury filled season after last year. Terence Newman really needs to stay healthy for once, and losing our number one receiver, who is already taking so much heat before he’s been given a chance, would really bring the team down.

DoughboyCowboy’s Cowboy Round-Up

First off, Michael Irvin is on Dancing with the Stars. I was very excited about this. With his popularity and his moves from the football field, I think he is the man to beat. If he wins, next up is Troy. Go Playmaker of the Stars!

OK, now for the Cowboys… I don’t take too much into pre-season but it is nice to see the players get off the rust in a live game. Tony Romo looked good. His first series was off. But the way he moved the offense in his second series was great. Showing a little bit of what could be a great season, he spread the ball around and utilized all the weapons available to him.

Felix JonesAs soon as I seen Felix Jones run a few yards. I admit I said this out loud, “Felix I missed you”. The offensive will be awesome. This year I am really focusing on Witten and hoping he has a spectacular year. There is a hidden agenda with that one, more of that later.

The defense looked OK. While the 2nd and 3rd strings gave up a lot of points, the first team looked good. I am excited about Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Ware. The opposition wont know where DeMarcus will be coming from. Look out for a top 5 defense.

It was nice to see Keon Lattimore get a few reps too. I think he is a sleeper for this team if he makes the full roster. Jesse Holley was also playing in a few plays too. It was nice to see number 16 running down the field. Sometimes players who are trying for a spot on the team don’t play that much. We’ll see if he completes the dream. I still think Hawkins should of made the team instead.

I am looking forward to this Friday’s game. I wont be able to see it here in Illinois, but it will be on NFL Network on Saturday. I want to see the inside of the new stadium. Look for a great season to come!

Each Monday I will talk about the Cowboys and what I think about the team. If anyone can think of a better title let me know. I am looking forward to a great Cowboys season! – DoughboyCowboy

First Preseason Game

Hey folks, well the first preseason game is coming up on Thursday and it I cannot wait. No, it will not be a game in which the starters will play much, if at all. What it means is that the season is right around the corner and we will finally get to see what the Cowboys have learned from last year’s performance.

We will get to see some young rookies show what they have and maybe show us that they deserve a starting position. We never really learn a lot from the preseason games, but it is football and the real games will be here soon enough.

Hopefully we will get to see a series or two of Romo and the other starters, I am curious to see the changes in the offense or lack of changes.

Anyway, it will be great to see some Cowboys playing football and to see some hitting by the defense. Even though we have experienced some injuries already, hopefully we will not have more. We will see what happens.